Thinking Outside the Box – Refrigerated Storage

Keller is finalizing the standard details for refrigerated storage, and it certainly has been a big learning curve for everyone!

On a daily basis, Keller practices the 3 C’s:




With those in mind and the research done to get standards nailed down…..there is a 4th “C” that cannot be overlooked on this particular project:


Learning to work through mistakes and think through the inside out principle involved in designing a refrigerated storage building will build Character! But, Concern and Competence is the preferred route.

What inside out means is very critical to understand. Cold storage buildings must be designed to eliminate moist air / condensation infiltration. In the usual building envelope, the outside cold air is kept out to keep the inside warm. Here, the warm outside air that is rich in moisture is kept out to keep the inside cold.

If the outside moist air, even in small amounts is allowed to penetrate the envelope, damage to the stored product and the building will be the inevitable result.

Enclosure systems must:

  • Insulate continuously and unbroken to eliminate thermal bridging.
  • Provide air and vapor barrier that is also continuous.
  • Be on the outside (warm) side of the envelope.
  • Consider frost heave from stacking of cold dense air at the floor.

The true success of any design lies in the ability of the crews in the field to be meticulous in their install of the various details. A tiny gap that would be inconsequential in a standard building could spell an expensive warranty recall in a refrigerated storage building.

Finally, some words of wisdom Doug Sutter, Keller Project Manager, would like to share that were shared with him back in 1984:


The crew foreman and the job supervisor will need to be on the scaffold, on the roof, in the trenches.

It is known Keller has what it takes to do this well.

We look forward to building on what we know.